There are a handful of things in my life that I have been sure about. When I was fifteen, I felt a call to full-time ministry. I was naive in my thinking of what that would look like, but I was beyond certain that it was something I was supposed to pursue. When it came time to pick which college I would attend, my parents had only one requirement - I would graduate with a degree of some sort. That meant that I had to find a degree program to support my endeavors.
Looking back it’s easy to see that we both had a plan. I had a plan of becoming a world famous christian singer, and my parents had a plan of me being able to support myself by having a degree as a music teacher. They called it the back up plan. I called it painful.
I won’t spoil the story just yet, but a lot has happened since then.
Maybe you feel like you are at a major crossroads in life, and are trying to figure out which path to take. Well, let me first begin by saying you are the authority on you. What I say here is just my perspective. I hope that it can help you make the best decision possible for your future. And that is why I really want to talk to you today about whether or not we should have a back up plan or as some people call it a 'plan-b'.
My friend Lisa is one of the funniest girls I know. Talent oozes from this girl, and I am grateful to be her friend. She has been very blessed to pursue her love of comedy and acting by landing some really great gigs. But, like everyone in the industry, she wonders if she needs to have a back up plan just in case this acting thing doesn’t work out. Not long ago she asked me this great question, “is it wise or destructive to foster a back up plan in case my dreams don’t come true?"
My answer to this question may or may not surprise you. But after years of life experience, and researching the success patterns of those who have risen to the top I have to say a lot to say on the subject.
First, there is really no way to focus on multiple things at once and be successful. Now, hear me… having a secondary job to support your art, career, new business may be necessary for a time. There is no shame in that. But, FOCUS on what you truly want. Make your ultimate goal your priority.
Determine your ‘why’. When you are able to concretely stand on your why, it become much easier to stay focused during the hard times. And yes, they will come. To really get to the heart of your ‘why’, you may want to work with a coach for a period of time so that you can be assured of your boundary lines.
Stay open handed. When we have closed hands gripping tightly to what we want, we are never open to the possibility of something greater. Sometimes our dreams expand and grow, and we want to be able to move with them and not work against them.
As it turned out, I graduated college and became a successful high school music teacher. I continue to sing to this day, and am grateful for the opportunities I get to do so. But it was during that time when I sat with my students that the full realization of my dream came into focus. I was meant to empower people to do extraordinary things.
My love for music had led me to that time and place. And, as life would have it, my parents were on to something. What I thought was a plan b, was actually a plan a. It's funny how we perceive the future when really what is important is the journey.
Now, let’s continue the conversation over on Facebook Live on Thursday morning at 11 am EST. I’d love to hear what you have to think, and answer any questions you might have about whether or not you should have a back up plan.
As a free gift to you, I've created what I call the ultimate decision making guide to walk you through the process of making those hard decisions in your life. You can grab yours below.